Adapting traditional land governance in Somalia

Pastoral rangelands are vital to Somalia’s livestock-dominated economy. Traditional common-property regimes are under pressure from rangeland enclosures, population growth and charcoal production. Also under these challenging situations, hybrids of customary and “modern” law enable pastoralist communities to assert their rights. Hybrid institutions that formalise roles for traditional leaders have allowed the development of strong Somali-owned businesses in water supply, telecommunications and aviation – sectors where foreign companies dominate in most of sub-Saharan Africa. The article “Who calls the shots? Adapting traditional land governance in Somalia” by Sadia Ahmed et al from the CELEP partner organisation PENHA (Pastoral and Environmental Network in the Horn of Africa) appeared in the December 2016 issue of Farming Matters on “Listening to pastoralists“. The article shows how participatory and inclusive processes for land management and land-policy development can reduce the risk of conflict. It provides evidence that traditional leaders are ready to negotiate and to participate in designing new approaches to pastoral development

Posted on 5 February 2017 in Pastoralism & Natural Resources, Pastoralism & Peacebuilding, Pastoralism, Policy & Power